Northampton mother and daughter team up to teach more children to be 'waste wise' with school's program

A Northampton mother and daughter team are taking on the world's waste with a national school's program to teach children about the importance of recycling.

Saturday, 9th November 2019, 6:03 am

Rachel Rowley's business Encore Environment has launched Waste Wise Kids to get youngsters thinking about how reducing waste will impact on their future.

Her nine-year-old daughter Mimi has recorded a fun video for the campaign and schools around the county have been getting involved.

Rachel said: "As a mother of two, I am acutely aware of how important it is for us to teach our children from a young age about waste and sustainability, and the huge role that plays on our future.

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“Children are naturally excited by new concepts and its interesting how many were shocked to think of their old toys and clothes as waste, they automatically just think of tins of beans and yoghurt pots!

"As a company, we want to impart our knowledge on the next generation and show them how easy it is to recycle and repurpose things they don’t want anymore.

"We have a particular emphasis on plastics and single-use, and we show them what beaches look like covered in waste plastics. They are openly shocked.”

Waste Wise Kids, which includes an on-site presentation, tasks and experiments, competitions and recycled handouts has so far engaged with more than 1,000 school children aged from four to 12 years old.

Mimi Pilcher is upcycling a lamp - just one way of reducing waste

Russell Lunn, head teacher at Sywell Primary School, said: “What we love about Waste Wise Kids is that it teaches the child to make the right choices about waste, which will hopefully stay with them throughout life.

"It was pitched perfectly to be accessible for all of the children whether they were four or 11 years old.

"It’s such an important subject to tackle and as a teacher to have the support of a company like Encore Environment is a real benefit.

"The children are so excited to show how capable they are, by building recycled robots and thinking of new ideas on how the school can reduce waste.”

Mimi Pilcher is upcycling a lamp - just one way of reducing waste

Talking about future plans, Rachel added: “We would like to see the topic of being ‘waste wise’ integrated more in the curriculum, rather than being an add on.

"We are very excited at how engaged and enthusiastic the children are, and we hope it continues to gain momentum across the country.”

For more information about what is involved and how to book a presentation, teachers can visit